“Did you actually want to meet any
of them?” Rose said.
“No,” Scorpius sighed, “I just find it hard to say so to them. They all talk so much and I can’t get a word in edgeways.”
“But won’t they find out, I mean, when you don’t show up to meet any of them?” She said and glanced out of the window to check that no-one was coming. “What will you say when you see them next?”
Scorpius stood up abruptly and began to walk with fervour back and forth. “Maybe they won’t have to find out,” he said quickly, glancing to Rose and then back at the floor, “not if you don’t tell them that you’ve seen and spoken to me. I’ll go and live in the Forbidde- Hagrid’s hut,” he said, suddenly remembering all the horrible stories he’d heard about the Forbidden Forest and knew that he wouldn’t be able to survive two minutes in there without fainting, falling over or losing a considerable amount of blood, “and you’ll bring me food down from the castle and I’ll get the centaurs to teach me. Maybe one of them will adopt me. Maybe I could be the first human centaur in history…”
“Not likely,” Rose snorted and Scorpius glared at her, “they don’t talk to humans anymore, remember? Professor Hagrid told us in Care of Magical Creatures last year. Plus,” she grinned, “you’ve got to come back up to the castle. I can’t wait to see the look on Tracy’s face.”
Rose and Tracy were friends; well, if you count a person who shouts at you regularly (on the Quidditch pitch), copies your work, and borrows your clothes without asking a friend
. So anything that humiliated Tracy, naturally, was something Rose relished in.
“And imagine if the three of them actually talk to each other and realise what you’ve done.” Rose cackled, smacking him heartily on the back.
“No, please,” Scorpius begged, taking Rose’s hands and looking into her eyes, “don’t say that. I quite like the shape of my nose as it is.”
“Don’t worry,” she smiled and shook her head, “I’m sure none of them actually realise you’re missing, let alone talk to each other. Your nose is safe.”
“That little liar.” Tracy snarled, punching her fist into her hand. “And he thought he could get away with it too!”
“Well, ‘liar’s a bit harsh, don’t you think?” Orla sniffed, “He never actually said to me that he was meeting you two tonight.”
“No, nor me,” Sophia said quietly.
“So I don’t really think him a liar. Maybe he just…forgot?” Orla shrugged, glancing down at her watch and wondering where on earth Scorpius could be this late. Maybe if she could slip away, she still might be able to find him and profess her undying love…
“Forgot! Ha!” Tracy laughed coldly. As a sportswoman, she didn’t like even the faintest whiff of foul play. And this whole situation reeked of it.
“But, think about it,” Orla implored Tracy, pulling her down onto one of the desks, “did he actually say anything about what he was doing tonight when you told him to meet you?”
Tracy thought back and bristled, “Well, no. No he didn’t say anything. I just, sort of, told him to meet me…”
“Same.” Sophia muttered.
“And me.” Orla said, suddenly realising just how similar all three of them were. And then she remembered Scorpius’s face and thought about nothing else.
They sat in the deserted Transfiguration classroom in silence for a few minutes, each of them thinking the whole situation through. Orla thought of nothing but Scorpy’s ‘glorious face’; Tracy went back to pacing about the room and thought of how they had first met; and Sophia thought of how she could still get him and prise these two girls’ little fingertips off of his perfect hair.
But firstly, she would need to use them.
“I think,” Sophia said quietly and turned to Orla and Tracy in turn, “I think we still have a good chance of finding him, but only if we do it together.”
“Yes, well thank you Little Miss Intelligent
, I do believe we’ve already tried that.” Tracy rolled her eyes and slumped down onto the nearest desk. “And, in case you’ve forgotten, we couldn’t find him anywhere.”
“I remember perfectly well, thank you.” Sophia said calmly, “But as a three, we all seem to know different sides of Scorpius. Orla knows about his-”
“-sensitive side.” Orla sighed, staring off into space.
“-athletic side.” Tracy growled and Sophia stared at her in wonder.
“-and me his charming side.” She smiled, “So to find him, I think the best way is to know everything about him. Starting with what he’s like around all of us, places we went with him and where we planned to meet him tonight. With all of this information, I think we have a good chance at finding him within the next two hours.”
Sophia looked around at the girls and raised her eyebrows, “Does that sound like a plan?”
Orla nodded, her head too filled with Scorpius to even be able to talk, and Tracy high-fived Sophia, proclaiming the plan to be “complete and utter genius”.
Trust the Gryffindors to get over-excited.
“So,” Sophia smiled, “who wants to go firs-”
“I met Scorpy,” Orla interrupted and Sophia took a deep breath. She could do without Orla’s infatuation with her man
, but she needed her; so she let her speak, “on the first day of Hogwarts, and I knew that we were meant to be together forever from the first moment I laid my eyes on him…”
Tracy glanced over at Sophia and rolled her eyes. This was going to be a very
“So why don’t you tell me about Orla and you?” Rose ventured to ask Scorpius, who had for the last fifteen minutes been velcroing and unvelcroing his shoes. It was just about doing her head in.
“I’ve already told you,” Scorpius mumbled, not even bothering to look up at her. “She fell ‘in love’ with me and won’t leave me alone.”
“No, you’ve told me you’ve run away from Orla because she wants to, as you so poetically put it, ‘marry me and then slowly and systematically take away everything good in my life’. Hopefully she’ll start with your shoes, eh?” Scorpius turned and glared at her and Rose sniggered. “Oh, come on, don’t be like that. I want to help you!”
“You can’t. No-one can.” He moped, collapsing onto the bench and taking deep calming breaths. Any thought of Orla and what she would do to him the next time they saw each other nearly always ended up with him either a) hyperventilating or b) crying.
At the moment he wanted to do both.
“Come on,” Rose sat down next to him and put her hand on his back, trying hard not to laugh, “I’m sure it’s not that bad.”
“Ha!” He laughed and looked up at Rose desperately, “Not that bad? The last time I saw her she tried to get me drunk and then get Archie Longbottom to marry us.”
“With the Giant Squid as the best man!” Rose’s mouth fell open and Scorpius nodded fervently. “It only didn’t go ahead because Archie was in the detention after smuggling some of his mum’s Firewhiskey into school and his dad found out! She tried to sneak him out of detention but Filch found her creeping around the castle and she had to leg it back to the Hufflepuff common room.”
Rose stared at Scorpius and then down at the ground.
“Well, that was once, I’m sure she’s fine normally-”
“She has one of my old tissues Spellotaped to the inside of her Divination textbook.” Scorpius reeled off on his fingers, “In our second year she sent all of the people I sat next to in class to the Hospital Wing so that she could sit next to me. In our fourth year she stole a pair of Matt Flint’s underwear thinking they were mine, and only returned them when I managed to let slip that Flint had ‘lost a pair’. Do you want me to continue?”
Rose sat utterly stunned and thought back to the quiet red-headed girl. She had spoken to Orla once and thought she seemed nice enough, a little bit dim (but that couldn’t be helped) but nice all the same. But now, well now there was only one thing she could say:
“She’s completely mental.”
“You’re telling me,” Scorpius said, the manic look still in his eyes. “So now do you understand why I had to get away?”
“Well this all could have been avoided if you’d just learnt to stick up for yourself every once in a while.” Rose said, standing up and pulling him up with her. “Come on, I’ll teach you now.”
“What?” He squeaked, glancing desperately at the exits, “No, look it’ll be fine. I’ll just marry all of them and then I won’t-”
“Scorpius, you need to get over your fear of these girls, especially Orla. Look,” she turned around and stood a couple of meters away from him and grinned, “I’ll play Orla and I’ll ask you whether you want to go on the Hogsmeade trip this weekend and you’ll say…”
He looked at her like a hare caught in the headlights and said very quietly, “I’d – er – I’d say…” he glanced around the room wildly for some kind of help and eventually gave up, “Oh I’d just say ‘Fine! Marry me! Have my spawn and convict me to live a life of anguish and pain!’”
Rose swallowed the laughter threatening to burst through her lips and put her arm around Scorpius’s shoulders. “You just need a bit of practise, Scorpius, don’t get all downhearted.”
“But I can’t even deal with one girl! How am I meant to deal with three?”
“Practise,” Rose smiled, “Practise makes perfect.”
“And when we were fifteen and a half, I made a pact with myself that I was going to marry him by the time we were eighteen. And by the time we were nineteen, we would have three children and a big white house with unicorns and Hippogriffs and…”
Tracy yawned and lolled back on the desk. They had been listening to Orla rattle on about her ‘deep and pure love’ for Scorpius for over half an hour now, and so far all they had learnt about where they might find him is that sometimes he liked to go for a quiet stroll in the grounds. Which meant that they only had to search all fifteen acres of the Hogwarts grounds to find him.
Yeah, like that would only take them the two hours Sophia had predicted.
Sophia glanced over at Tracy and sighed, “Orla, do you mind skipping a few bits? I mean, I know it’s great that you’re so-” Obsessed? Crazy? “-in love and everything, but we don’t have a lot of time here. Just tell us about your plans for meeting him.”
“Briefly.” Tracy moaned and Sophia hid her smile.
Orla glared at the two girls. Of course they
wouldn’t understand about her and Scorpy’s special relationship, it’s not something everyone had or could get. “After Herbology today, I told Scorpeo to meet me in the Great Hall at half past five. I call him Scorpeo sometimes, you know, because he’s my own personal Romeo and I’m his Juliet; we’re tangled in such a deep kind of love that no-one understands us and we have to keep it a secret…” she smiled and stared off into space again.
Sophia rolled her eyes and poked Orla, “And he never showed?”
“No,” she bristled and picked up her handkerchief again, “no he didn’t. And I went round everywhere looking for him and I still couldn’t find him.”
“What do you mean by ‘everywhere’?” Tracy asked, sitting up and finally paying attention.
“Well,” Orla counted off on her fingers, “I went to the Great Hall, obviously, then to the library, and then the Slytherin common room where I met you.”
The girls stared at her dumbfounded for a moment and Tracy turned to Sophia and laughed. “And that constitutes as everywhere
“Hey!” Orla stood up indignantly and pointed her finger at Tracy, “I was a wreck. I was emotional. I wasn’t thinking straight.”
“You’re still not.” Tracy muttered, “Thinking he would prefer you over me.”
Orla burst into furious tears and stormed over to the other side of the room to hide her face. They were definitely
not going to find Scorpius Malfoy this evening at this rate.
Sultry Sophia, Scorpius solemn, and a little bit more of Orla in anguish.
: Thank you to everyone who is reading this/has read this! It's lovely to hear your responses to it, so keep 'em coming!